Friday, February 18, 2011

The Walkman is back

 but this being E,W&W you probably guessed I wasn't talking about Sony products. It seems like an age since I shared with you all something truly hideous from the bottom of the sea (the Caribbean has relatively few truly ghastly creatures) so I dug into the archive for something that last featured in June 2006. I'm talking about the Indian Walkman or Inimicus filamentosus. That was an adult but this is a juvenile or at least a juvenile of something closely related. At least 8 members of the genus Inimicus are known from the Philippines and truth be told I'm not sure what this is.


As you will be able to tell by comparing it to the blade of turfgrass sized blades of seagrass this is not a big fish; it's tiny and the ghouls are essentially very similar. They also have cool names; this could be a spotted ghoul, a bearded ghoul, a chinese ghoul, a devilwalker, Indian walkman, 2 stick stingfish or it could belong to one of the species that as yet hasn't been given a cool english name. If some of the names didn't give it away, I'll point out that Inimicus resides within the family known as stonefishes and that should tell you we're talking about something packing some venom.


The shot above also gives you a decent look at another cool ghoul feature; these guys have legs. Not fins as feet like the frogfish but completely modified sets of fin rays which can be worked to provide a walking motion as well as burst of swimming power from the tail. Obviously its an ambush predator and swimming capability is accordingly a burst thing; you won't see this cruise past you in the blue water. Probably a good thing given how freaky looking they are.

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